The Largest Dictation in the World Organized by Champs-Elysées Committee on Famous Parisian Avenue – Text and Details

This Sunday afternoon, the Champs-Elysées committee organized the largest dictation in the world on the famous Parisian avenue. Here is the text with which the candidates were confronted.

1779 desks lined up on the cobblestones. This Sunday, the avenue des Champs-Elysées was transformed into a huge classroom, the time of a giant dictation. Kept secret until the end, the text was finally revealed in the afternoon: it was an extract from Letters of my mill“The Pope’s Mule”, by Alphonse Daudet.

The starting gun for the event was given at 1:30 p.m. 1,700 people of all ages were expected for this first “dictation from our childhood”, which was recited three times by journalist Augustin Trapenard.

Here is the text of this exceptional dictation.

Text taken from Lettres de mon Moulin, “La Mule du Pape” by Alphonse Daudet

“Who has not seen Avignon in the time of the Popes, has seen nothing. For the gaiety, the life, the animation, the festive train, never a city like it.

There were, from morning to evening, processions, pilgrimages, the streets strewn with flowers, lined with high lists, arrivals of cardinals by the Rhone, banners in the wind, galleys decked out in flags, the soldiers of the Pope singing Latin on the squares, the rattles of the begging brothers; then, from top to bottom of the houses which crowded buzzing around the great papal palace like bees around their hive, there was still the ticking of the lace looms, the comings and goings of the shuttles weaving gold chasubles, the small hammers of cruet-cutters, the soundboards that were adjusted at luthiers, the hymns of the warping women; above that the sound of the bells, and always a few tambourines that could be heard humming over there, on the side of the bridge.

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Because with us, when the people are happy, they have to dance, they have to dance; and as at that time the streets of the city were too narrow for farandole, fifes and tambourines were posted on the bridge of Avignon, in the cool wind of the Rhone, and day and night they danced there, they danced there…

Ah! happy times! the happy city!”

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Two other dictations were planned for the afternoon: a so-called “sports” one, dictated by Pierre Rabadan, sports assistant at the town hall of Paris; and another called “contemporary”, supported by the author Katherine Pancol.

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